Cambridge website for Synthetic Biology resources

Compiled by Jim Haseloff at the University of Cambridge. SpannerPlantLogo140This site contains details of recent papers and activity in Synthetic Biology, with particular emphasis on: (i) development of standards in biology and DNA parts, (ii) microbial and (iii) plant systems, (iv) research and teaching in the field at the University of Cambridge, (v) hardware for scientific computing and instrumentation, (vi) tools for scientific productivity and collected miscellany.

Similar to the Cambridge-based Raspberry Pi and OpenLabTools initiatives, we promote the use of low cost and open source tools - in our case for use in biological engineering.

Google: Synthetic Biology news

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Meetings: Synthetic Biology

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National Academies SynBio grants

 National Academies' Grants to Spur Synthetic Biology

"We received a record number of proposals, including many bold and innovative projects, and believe that these collaborations will result in the most generative findings," Princeton University Professor of Molecular biology and Chair of the NAFKI Seventh Annual Futures Conference Bonnie Bassler said in a statement.

Huimin Zhao and Zengyi Shao of the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, will use a $100,000 grant for a research program focused on genome mining of natural products using synthetic biology. This research effort will involve developing a new synthetic biology strategy to discovery novel natural products from sequenced genomes and metagenomes. These studies could lead to the discovery and development of new drugs for treating infectious diseases and cancers.

Guantam Dantas and Bin Wang of Washington University, St. Louis, and Rob Knight of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute received a $75,000 grant to use metagenomics to study enzymatic functions from low-volume samples and whole-genome amplification. The research efforts will use experimental methods to capture diverse biological machinery from a range of environments using "extremely small amounts of genetic material and useful computational methods." The goal is to improve the ability to define fitness landscapes and harness the potential of chemical processing of biological systems.

Emory University Researchers Deboleena Roy and Ichiro Matsumura, along with other collaborators, will use a $75,000 grant to develop a research and education training program that will train graduate students in bioengineering and bioethics and will develop participatory research practices in synthetic biology to address the need for engaging with non-traditional stakeholders.

John Cumbers of Brown University and Lynn Rothschild of the NASA Ames Research Center and Brown University, won a $25,000 grant to conduct an interdisciplinary workshop that will bring together synthetic biology leaders with space scientists and engineers to discuss the role that synthetic biology could play in achieving missions for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

Research news at Cambridge University

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Online resources, including bibliography, weblinks and posters, for work with the simple plant system, Marchantia polymorpha.

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OpenLabTools: open technology in Cambridge


The OpenLabTools Project is a new initiative for the development of low cost and open access scientific tools at the University of Cambridge. With support from the Raspberry Pi Foundation, student projects include data acquisition, sensing, actuating, processing and 3D manufacturing, see the website.

Research Studies

PhD Studentships in Cambridge

The Board of Graduate Studies manages admission of the University's graduate students. Prospective students should start here - for an introduction to the University of Cambridge, the courses we offer, how to apply for postgraduate study, how your application will be processed, and immigration and other important information.

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